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game preview

Islanders at Blues preview

Greiss expected to start for New York; St. Louis eyes sixth straight win

by Louie Korac / Independent Correspondent

ISLANDERS (35-20-7) at BLUES (37-17-10)

8 p.m. ET; FS-MW, MSG+, NHL.TV


The Game

The St. Louis Blues will try for their sixth straight win when they host the New York Islanders at Enterprise Center on Thursday.

St. Louis has outscored its opponents 19-7 in winning five straight following a five-game winless streak (0-3-2).

The Blues lead the Colorado Avalanche by three points for first in the Central Division.

The Islanders have a point in three straight games (2-0-1) following a four-game losing streak. They hold the first wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference and trail the Philadelphia Flyers by two points for third place in the Metropolitan Division.

New York has lost four in a row on the road and has been outscored 11-2 in that span.

Goalie Thomas Greiss is expected to start for the Islanders. He has not started a game since a 5-0 loss at the Nashville Predators on Feb. 13. Semyon Varlamov has started the past six games.


Players to watch

Islanders forward Jordan Eberle has six points (four goals, two assists) in a four-game point streak.

Blues forward Jaden Schwartz has five points (one goal, four assists) in a three-game point streak.


They said it

"It was fun with my new teammates. Everyone made me feel so comfortable. That took some of the nerves away. Can't wait now to keep going with this group of guys." -- Islanders center Jean-Gabriel Pageau on his first game, a 4-3 overtime loss to the New York Rangers on Tuesday, after being acquired from the Ottawa Senators on Monday

"The past three times we've played them, I think we've had the puck a lot and did a lot of good things and we ended up losing not getting enough goals, then third period rolled around last game (a 3-2 overtime loss on Oct. 14), we shot ourselves in the foot in that game. We didn't play very well in the third there [on Long] Island." -- Blues coach Craig Berube on playing the Islanders


Islanders projected lineup

Anders Lee -- Mathew Barzal -- Jordan Eberle

Anthony Beauvillier -- Brock Nelson -- Derick Brassard

Michael Dal Colle -- Jean-Gabriel Pageau -- Josh Bailey

Ross Johnston -- Otto Koivula -- Leo Komarov

Nick Leddy -- Ryan Pulock

Devon Toews -- Scott Mayfield

Noah Dobson -- Johnny Boychuk

Thomas Greiss

Semyon Varlamov

Scratched: Matt Martin, Tom Kuhnhackl, Andrew Ladd

Injured: Andy Greene (undisclosed), Cal Clutterbuck (wrist), Casey Cizikas (leg), Adam Pelech (Achilles)


Blues projected lineup

Jaden Schwartz -- Ryan O'Reilly -- Brayden Schenn

Zach Sanford -- Robert Thomas -- David Perron

Alexander Steen -- Oskar Sundqvist -- Jordan Kyrou

Ivan Barbashev -- Tyler Bozak

Carl Gunnarsson -- Alex Pietrangelo

Marco Scandella -- Colton Parayko

Vince Dunn -- Justin Faulk

Robert Bortuzzo

Jordan Binnington

Jake Allen

Scratched: Jacob de la Rose, Mackenzie MacEachern, Troy Brouwer

Injured: Vladimir Tarasenko (shoulder), Jay Bouwmeester (cardiac episode), Sammy Blais (undisclosed)


Status report

Greene, a defenseman, is day-to-day after leaving during the first period against the Rangers on Tuesday. Dobson will replace Greene and play for the first time in six games. ... Johnston will play and Martin, a forward, will be a healthy scratch for the first time since Oct. 17. ... Berube said Blais, a forward, is a game-time decision. The Blues will go with 11 forwards and seven defensemen and Bortuzzo will play if Blais can't.


Stat pack

Lee has six points (two goals, four assists) in a three-game point streak. ... Nelson has five points (two goals, three assists) in a four-game point streak. ... Barzal has six assists in a four-game point streak. ... Binnington is 4-0-0 with a 1.51 goals-against average, a .936 save percentage and two shutouts his past four starts.

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